Down Your High Street, an omnichannel platform for independent retailers, has raised £265,000 through crowdfunding website Crowdcube to help in its quest to “save the high street”.
The company beat its target of £150k, from a total of 147 investors and shareholders. Investor Martin Newman, who has been involved in multi channel retailing for over 30 years, has joined the business as an adviser.
Founded in 2013, Down Your High Street is a website that provides independent shop owners with the tools to build their online presence across the country.
The transactional site is free for retailers. When they sign up, they gain access to the “back-end” content management system to upload product imagery and descriptions. Once a customer purchases through the website, an email is sent to the retailer to prompt them to deliver the product. Down Your High Street takes 15% commission on sales.
Currently, 410 retailers have signed up and its aim is to reach 1,000 members by July this year. Fashion brands on the website include Artichoke of Ely and luxury men’s outfitters Union 22. Other products stocked include homeware, health and beauty, and electronics.
Co-founder of Down Your High Street Daniel Whytock told Drapers: “The term ‘death of the high street’ has been thrown around a lot, but the high street is evolving. In the past, small businesses haven’t been able to adapt because they have been held back by the digital era. But independent retailers are nimble and can adapt to changes very quickly. They need to know how to adapt and as an omnichannel platform we help them have the opportunity to stay on top of what’s happening. We believe independents will be the face of the high street.
“We are so passionate about supporting the high street and helping retailers. We always make sure the retailer is at the forefront.”